Linguistics and English Language

Bilingualism research group

Speaker: Helen Koulidovra

Title: Sign language multilinguals: from policy to filling the gaps in research... and back.

Abstract: Despite the fact that the vast majority of states in the US accept ASL as satisfying the Modern Language requirement at the K-12 and college/university level, according to the general federal policy, ASL remains viewed as something other than a full-fledged language. This view has had implications for educational policy for children for whom ASL is a native language. Historically, this population has been excluded from any mainstream data collection in the US as well as other countries.  In this talk, I will explore the contributions of sign multilinguals to linguistic theorizing in general and theorizing about multilingualism in particular. We will examine results of ongoing research on deaf and hearing children of Deaf adults, foreign born deaf teens acquiring a new sign language as an additional language, and deaf children bilingual in two different sign languages. The languages involved in the project are ASL, English, Emirati Sign Language, Icelandic Sign Language, Lithuanian Sign Language, and Icelandic. The findings suggest that while these data fill a glaring  gap in the literature, they can do so only when/if another change occurs -- the status of sign languages.


Please contact Lihua Xia or Martha Robinson to find out specific dates for this semester and/or to be added on the mailing list.

Lihua Xia

Martha Robinson

Feb 10 2020 -

Bilingualism research group

2020-02-10: Sign language multilinguals: from policy to filling the gaps in research... and back.

Room S38, Psychology Building, 7 George Square, Edinburgh, EH8 9JZ